Turning Avocado Pits Into Eco-Friendly Progress

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One Mexican company is changing how we go green – with avocados

With the growing push for greener solutions in the food industry, companies are saying goodbye to wasteful products like plastic straws. Although this effort is designed to help eliminate harm to the earth, some companies aren’t just choosing to leave them behind; they’re creating a biodegradable future.

National Geographic reports Americans use 500 plastic straws per day – that’s 8.3 billion of them landing on a beach somewhere per year, according to a recent study.

Mexican company BIOFASE produces biodegradable straws and eating utensils from avocado pits. They use 15,000 pits per day which come from U.S.-based food company Simplot. From those pits, 130 tons of bioplastic products come out every month, 40 percent of which are straws. This means less plastic straws end up as toxic waste harming the environment.

BIOFASE’s products are better for the environment than traditional plastic, decomposing after 240 days while exposed to the elements. Compare that with the 100 years it takes traditional plastic material to decompose.

El Universal reports the bioplastics company started making eating utensils from their patented pit material in 2013, after BIOFASE founder Scott Munguia discovered the bioplastic compound while doing a year and a half of research.  

“I was in college and I found there was a biopolymer in avocado seeds which could be transformed into biodegradable thermoplastic – a type of plastic which can biodegrade,” he said.

With this innovation, BIOFASE changed the face of biodegradable products in Mexico. “Before the creation of BIOFASE, all biodegradable plastic products were imported from other countries,” the company’s website states. “Now we lead the biopolymer production in Latin America, exporting our products to more than 11 countries.” 80 percent of their production is exported to countries like Colombia and the United States.

BIOFASE doesn’t just talk the talk, they walk the walk. Their Facebook page is full of promotional, yet uplifting material, often providing inspirational quotes for their followers. “A healthy ecosystem is the base for a healthy economy,” one post said, quoting former U.S. Rep. Claudia Schneider (R-R.I.).

Start Somewhere:

Consumers interested in purchasing the straws can do so in the BIOFASE store. A box of 150 straws costs about $25, each straw costing only 12 cents more than the traditional plastic types for a cleaner environment.